Whenever I'm showing properties to buyers that are new to me, I make a point of rushing them down to the basement of the home first thing so we can look at the "bones". I don't want them getting hung up on what i call the pretty pretty aspects of the home.
I make the analogy that a house is like a living thing. The furnace is the heart, the insulation the skin and the foundation is the bones. I point out any issues with the bones that I see. I teach them to look for water stains on the floor, dark spots on the insulation as well as to examine the flooring system, i.e. I joist, trusses, dimensional etc., age of the furnace and the water heater.
It funny because by our second or third trip out, they themselves even refer to "checking out the bones". While room sizes, layout and sq. ft. are very important, in my mind, the structure of the house is more important. By the time my buyers are ready to purchase a home, they know all the terminology as well as what to look for as potential problem areas.
I caution them that our home analysis does not take the place of a home inspection by a licensed inspector but it does give them a leg up on understanding what they may be potentially buying.